How to do New York City: SM Approved

New York City was a dream. Completely magical.

The hustle is fricken real. People are ALIVE. The crowds are even realer.

I was expecting to be a little taken back by New York City’s chaos, but I’m shocked about how much I loved the city! I’ve never seen more people in a city before. The place is packed for miles on end. Everyone has a destination and a purpose in their strut. It was fascinating as I’m so used to the laid back surfer vibes San Diego lives and breathes…

New York was kind of like a spritzer, it was a nice & refreshing treat.

So here’s how we did NYC: Shylah May approved.

Traveling and Eating Healthy:

I get asked a lot how I eat healthy when I’m eating out. With New York, I researched “healthy restaurants in New York City” into yelp, google, Pinterest etc and then I compiled a list. If we weren’t specifically going to a branded “healthy restaurant” then I ordered something clean and made modifications so my stomach can tolerate it. Think salads, chicken, steak, roasted veggies, avocado, lots of fats etc.

For NYC, I did all of the research for you! Here is our healthy restaurant itinerary:

Brunch + Lunch:

The Butcher’s Daughter: Everything on the menu is so damn good.

Blue Bottle Coffee: Almond Milk Latte and avocado toast is perf when you’re on the go!

Hole in the Wall: Cute ass Aussie Cafe… literally feels like you’re at the beach in Australia.

Hu Kitchen: A restaurant I whole-heartedly trust. They sell their chocolate at my local health food store and I absolutely had to visit their restaurant in NYC. They are “a high quality/low-processed real food casual kitchen and market.” Perfect for my paleo lifestyle!

Fresh&Co: Delicious Salads, wraps and sandwiches. For the health conscious person on the go!

Juice Generation: Their almond butter açaí bowl hit the spot!

De Maria: We didn’t get the chance to eat here, but I’ve heard its one of the best!



Wholefoods (Duh!) No really, lol. We had snacks and dinner from WholeFoods the first night and then the second night we ordered take out from Hu’s Kitchen.

Pressed Juicery Freeze: If you count Pressed Juicery as dinner, we had that too…like every night! Get the vanilla and chocolate side by side topped with almonds, chocolate sauce and almond butter. UGH suh good!

Eataly: Grab some gelato or literally a bite of Italy to go. Flat Iron is across the street. Eataly + Flat Iron = HELLO photoshoot!

Quality Meats: We went out with a bang our last night in NYC. This place is on the pricier end, but definitely worth it. I’ve never had better filet mignon in my life. I know Trevor can say the same. This place is so romantic! Think dim lighting, red wine, and chocolate cake. (Hello BALANCE!)

First Day:

Top of the Rock – a must see. The view is incredible. You can see all of NYC, which means snapping the perfect Instagram picture is easy money. The view is not only amazing, but so is the history. There is so much to do at Rockefeller Center as well. There was an ice skating rink, people watching, shopping, restaurants, and so much to see!

Times Square – Holy people. We walked through Times Square during the day on our way to Top of the Rock and I was in total awe. Trevor took me back at night and OMG, I was even more struck. Theres so many ads, lights, people, activities. The place is full of character! I definitely did not hang out there for longer than 20 minutes, but it’s for sure a sight to see!

Grand Central Station – Get a drink at the bar and people watch or go downstairs to the oyster bar.

Shopping – There’s shopping everywhere you walk. We ran into the largest Adidas, Free People and Macy’s on 5th Avenue.

Second Day

SoHo – The best places to brunch, China Town, and all of the shopping! You can spend hours here, seriously!

Sex Museum – It was just ehhh. It wasn’t our favorite part of the trip. There is definitely more fun things to see and do.

Central Park – Grab an almond milk latte and stroll through the park. You can get lost in this place and walk for hours. It was a nice break from the city. Plus, it’s right next to the Upper East Side.

Upper East Side – I LOVED seeing the more boujee side of the city. It was fun walking through the upscale apartments and pretending to live the “Gossip Girl” life.

Third Day

9/11 Memorial & Museum – Trevor’s parents treated us to the early access museum tour, which is the BEST way to go. We and five others got the whole museum to ourselves with a private tour. It was truly breathtaking.

The Brooklyn Bridge – Walk the bridge and enjoy the city from afar!

The subway – Take the subway from Brooklyn back to Manhattan. We got lost and ended up going the wrong way…but who cares it was part of the fun.

230 Fifth Roof Top – The only way to see a sunset in NYC is from a roof top, which was sooo weird for me. Let me tell you, this rooftop bar was the absolute CUTEST. They had fricken igloos with heaters and robes inside!

Cute hotels:

We stayed at the Henri Hotel, which was quaint and boutiquey. It was perfect for our short stay. Small rooms, adorable & affordable, best location and a penthouse bar.

Our other options we were looking at were the Ace Hotel and Arlo Soho Hotel. Both to die for, but a lil bit more expensive than what we had in mind! We did end up visiting the Ace Hotel and I could stay in there all day. They had an adorable lobby that had an old fashion Photo Booth, a bar and a coffee shop. The ambiance was so trendy… I was dying!

Rooftop Bars:

Refinery Rooftop

Le Bain at The Standard

230 Fifth Roof Top

Let me know in the comments below your tips to New York or if you have any plans of visiting!



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  1. Anonymous says:

    I Want to go again and do it the ShyjahMay way!!! ????????♥️

  2. Shylah says:

    We can go together!! xx